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Small UK Lawn (3 Cultivar KBG Grow)

10064 Views 48 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  g-man
Hi All - first time posting! I've spent a couple of years remodeling my back garden, torn up some of the concrete hardscaping and put in wooden decking regrading in the process, now the hardscaping is done it's about time to do the grass from seed.

Have spent most of the summer fallowing the bare earth alternating between hoeing and Glyphosate to get as much of the resident seed as possible. Looking to lay down seed in the next couple of weeks as the heat comes out of the summer.

The area I am going to seed is about 22m² all pretty decent topsoil which I am going good to dig in some Fish, Blood and Bone before I thrower down. Now, I'm fan of the colour of Kentucky Bluegrass, or Smooth-stalked Meadow Grass as we call it, as there is a fair abundance of KBG in the local area due to it growing wild on the south downs.

The Plan


Sowing Rate:
25g per m²

Total Required Seed:

30% / 180g Festuca rubra - Red Fescue
10% / 60g Agrostis capillaris - Common Bent
60% / 360g Poa pratensis - Kentucky Bluegrass

Hoping the mix of grasses will give me a good amount of KBG balanced by other grasses. Or alternatively I have no idea what I am doing.

All suggestions, advice and feedback appreciated.
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Ok so I need to review the seeding rate based upon a weighted average, I'll do that. Thanks.
Richard Slater said:
Hi All - first time posting!
Welcome to TLF! :thumbup:
Welcome to TLF! Is the area mostly sunny, or is it shaded by trees? Is the area flat or on a hill? Can you post any pictures of your progress so far?
And what are your typical summer and winter temperatures.
The area is flat, it has sun most of the day only obscured by fences when the sun is at its lowest. Typically summer temperatures are about 25℃ and winters are mild, rarely get lower than 4℃.

I don't have meaningful pictures at the moment as I am in the process of replacing all of the fences which has resulted in fence panels everywhere.
Lots of sun and cool temps sound like a perfect area for kentucky bluegrass. I'm not sure I would like the mix with bent and red fescue. Bent stands out when compared to bluegrass and red fescue is a finer bladed grass better suited for shade. All 3 different species have different nitrogen and watering needs as well. Do other lawns in the area typically have bluegrass mixed with bent? What are your thoughts of just using a blend of only kentucky bluegrass cultivars or maybe a mix of bluegrass and ryegrass which would also do really well in sunny, cool climates. With a bluegrass blend or a bluegrass/ryegrass mix you would have a more uniform appearance.
I second pete1313 post. With a low of 4c (40f) and a high of 25c (77f), that's perfect weather for a kbg lawn.
I would love to have a KBG only lawn, it's not something that happens in the UK - lawns are always a blend of species. That being said I have no objection to doing it differently from everyone else.

First problem I have is buying the KBG cultivars in the UK, I don't think the common cultivars in the US such as Midnight are available and whilst we have our own equivalents, seed producers don't sell directly to consumers.

Any suggestions?
In a quick search online I found this. KBG, Rye and tall fescue

Maybe give them a call and see if they sell you a pure seed or could place you in contact with someone.
Thanks, I spoke to The Grass Seed Store and they do carry both Miracle and Evora.

They pointed me back to the big UK seed houses for the full range, specifically DLF, Barenberg and Germinal - I've tried talking to DLF before but they are only interested in selling by the pallet and are not willing to tell me who stocks which varieties for confidentiality reasons.

Is there value in just taking what The Grass Seed Store stocks and giving it a try, it's only 22m². I will try talking to the other online shops and the seed houses to see if I can find a wider selection of cultivars.
The names of some cultivars would likely be different than usa. If you want a kbg lawn, then try what variety they have at hand. You could always kill it and change it in the future.
They are different for example in the USA you have Midnight and Midnight II have been breed for that deep Blue-Green colour, or colour :), whereas in the UK DLF produce Rhythm which has been breed for a similar purpose.
So here is the new plan:

Coverage: 22m² or 240ft²
Sowing Rate: 35g per m²
Total Required Seed: 770g + 30% for greenhouse plugs

33% / 257g Poa Pratensis (Mercury) - Smooth Stalked Meadow Grass
33% / 257g Poa Pratensis (Miracle) - Smooth Stalked Meadow Grass
33% / 257g Poa Pratensis (Sombrero) - Smooth Stalked Meadow Grass
Total: £28

Other Prep:
Starter Fertiliser: 5KG Preseed Fertilizer @ 50g/m² = £12.00
Top Soil: Westland Top Soil * 20 = £82.80

Anyone else who happens to be in the UK I highly recommend the folks at The Grass Seed Store who whilst haven't been able to supply the seed as they only stock one KBG cultivar suitable for turf. In the end I am sourcing my seeds directly from DLF.

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Hi Richard

Did you ask DLF to make this smooth meadow grass mix up for you? And how did it turn out? Do you have any pictures?

@Richard Slater hasn't been online since 2017. It is normal for folks to go quiet during the winter. Try sending him an email via the profile link.
Hi Darren,

To be honest the grow didn't go as well as I would have liked, however, I don't believe it is anything to do with the climate or cultivars. Sadly I had a member of my family pass away and the lawn was the least of my worries, what I did get down has done fairly well given the fact I didn't water it anywhere near as often as I should have, I'm going to be away quite a bit this summer but I am going to be experimenting with what I have left of my DLF seed in other patches to see if I can get some more coverage across the lower part of the lawn.

With regards to DLF, they were initially slow and quite confused that I didn't want a PRG mix but once I got past that they were very helpful, took payment via MasterCard over the phone and shipped priority even though I wasn't ordering very much.

I will try and grab some pictures when it isn't tipping it down with rain, not much to see but happy to answer any questions you may have.
Some pictures... finally...

Higher res and alternative photos are available on Lightroom.
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